Sunday, October 20, 2013

Beef Stew

One of my best friends Holly gave me a beautiful dutch oven for a present awhile back.  I have made beef stew in the crock pot many times, but today I tried it out in my dutch oven.  It turned out just as delicious, but in half the time.  So if you either don't have a crock pot or you don't want to wait 6-8 hours for dinner, try out this yummy beef stew.

I absolutely LOVE soups of all sorts, but usually I enjoy them alone and freeze the rest because Dan doesn't like most soup.  He does, however, love my beef stew.  Whats not to love?  Juicy beef, beef broth and red wine, tender vegetables and of course bacon.

First off, gather up all of the ingredients.  Chopped beef chuck, bacon, garlic, beef broth, red wine, carrots, potatoes, thyme, rosemary, sage, worcestershire sauce, flour, salt, pepper, oil and bread of choice.

Dice two slices of thick bacon and cook on medium heat in the dutch oven until slightly crispy.  Remove the bacon and set aside.

Coat the beef in 2 tablespoons flour and salt and pepper to preference.  The flour will help lightly thicken the stew later on.

Pour a tablespoon of vegetable oil in the hot dutch oven and add beef.  Cook until the meat is brown on most sides.

Add in the chopped garlic and bacon.  Cook for another 2-3 minutes, careful not to burn the garlic.

Pour in 2 cups beef broth and 2 cups red wine.  While you wait for the stew to come to a boil, take a flat spatula and scrape it across the bottom of the pan.  This is known as deglazing the pan and helps thicken the stew and give you all the delicious flavor stuck to the pan.

Once the stew starts to boil, cover and place the dutch oven into a 325 degree oven for 2 hours.

After two hours, add desired chopped up vegetables.  We added 3 chopped carrots.  Bake for another hour.

Peel and chop 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes and boil for 15-20 minutes or until fork tender.  I like pouring my stew over the potatoes.  You can mash them or leave them in chunks.

At this point your house will smell so delicious you won't be able to stand another minute.  Remove the dutch oven and pour the stew over them boiled potatoes.  Serve with bread or rolls.  We had an asiago and black pepper loaf that went perfectly with this stew.

Beef Stew
1 1/2 pounds chopped beef chuck
2 thick slices of bacon, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
2 cups beef broth
2 cups red wine
1 Tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon sage
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1-2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
3 Yukon gold potatoes
Bread of choice

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Cook chopped bacon until slightly crispy, remove from dutch oven.  Toss beef in flour, salt and pepper until evenly coated.  Add 1-2 Tablespoons vegetable oil to heated dutch oven.  Add beef and cook until most sides are browned.  Add chopped garlic and bacon.  Cook for 2-3 minutes, careful not to burn the garlic.
Add beef broth and red wine.  Add rosemary, thyme, sage and worcestershire sauce.  While waiting to bring broth to a boil, deglaze the pan (scrape flat spatula on bottom of pan).

Once broth comes to a boil cover and place in preheated oven.  Bake for 3 hours.  During the last hour add carrots (and any other vegetables of choice).

Peel and chop potatoes and add to pot of water.  Boil for 15-20 minutes or until fork tender.

Serve stew over potatoes and with a slice of bread or roll.  Enjoy!

*Crock pot recipe*
Follow all directions in a large pot on the stove top.  Instead of bringing to the oven, pour contents into crock pot and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

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